Best International Call Services of 2018

Rebecca Armstrong ·
Phones & Networking Writer
Updated
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We spent 30 hours testing different VoIP international call services to find the best fit for families or small businesses. We placed calls to several different countries, including to the middle-of-nowhere in Australia, so we can recommend the best services that won’t drop your calls. Our pick for the best international call service is Phone Power because it had the highest call quality among the services we tested. This provider also offers three tiers of international calling plans and a wide variety of useful features. Plus, it’s easy to use and has excellent customer support.   

Best Overall
Phone Power
With affordable month-to-month plans and 87 covered countries, Phone Power offers clear calls, reliable connection and the best set of features available in an international call service.
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Best Value for Small Businesses
Broadvoice
Broadvoice is Phone Power’s more business-oriented sister company which offers a cloud-based PBX and the same network of reliable service for international calls. It is our pick for small business owners.
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Best Customized Service
8 x 8 Solutions
All of 8x8’s plans are customizable for you or your small business. They also offer spectacular customer support for a truly personal experience.
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Product
Price
Overall Rating
Service Plans
Features
Help & Support
Month-to-Month Plan
Puerto Rico & Canada Considered Domestic
Unlimited International Minutes
Cancellation Fee
Number of Countries Covered
Setup Fee
Minimum World Plan Cost
Softphone
Call Quality
Call Transfer
Use Own Hardware
Conference Calling
Mobile App
Support Quality
Live Chat
Searchable Installation Manuals
Email Support
Phone Support
Searchable FAQs or Knowledgebase
Check Price
10 10 10 10
None
87
None
$19.95
100%
100%
Check Price
9.8 10 9.8 9.4
Varies
87
None
$19.95
100%
85%
Check Price
9.5 9.5 9.4 9.8
N/A
$59.00
40
$39.99
Custom
95%
90%
N/A
Check Price
9.4 9.4 10 7.5
N/A
$99.00
55
None
$24.95
100%
55%
Check Price
8.6 8.8 8.8 7.5
N/A
N/A
None
40
None
$15.00
N/A
85%
N/A
N/A
60%
N/A
Check Price
8.5 9.4 7.5 8.8
$60.00
60
$9.99
$27.99
60%
N/A
75%
Check Price
8.3 9.4 7.5 6.9
None
70
$29.95
$24.99
N/A
75%
N/A
80%
N/A
N/A
N/A
Check Price
8.1 8.8 7.8 6.9
N/A
None
67
$19.95
$19.95
N/A
80%
N/A
65%
N/A
N/A
Check Price
7.3 7.5 6.9 8.1
N/A
N/A
$49.95
60
None
$15.75
N/A
65%
N/A
80%
Check Price
6.9 6.3 7.5 6.9
N/A
N/A
None
1
None
NA
60%
N/A
55%
Best Overall
Phone Power is our pick as the best international call service because had the best combination of call quality, features and customer service. The company’s three plans differ only in price and how many countries are covered.
Its basic World Plan gives you unlimited calling to 28 countries, with Canada and Puerto Rico considered as domestic. It’s about five dollars more per month to upgrade to the World Plus plan, which ups the number of covered countries to 75. The World Premium plan gives you access to unlimited calls to 87 countries. In our tests, Phone Power calls were clear and never dropped. The customer support was prompt and helpful. We’re especially impressed that every feature is included across all of Phone Power’s World plans, and those features are top-notch, including a softphone (which is software that allows you to make internet calls from a computer or mobile device), a free second line, conference calling, call forwarding and a lot more that some other international call services charge extra to add. Phone Power World plans are available on both a month-to-month and contract basis. While signing a one- or two-year contract can save you some money compared to paying month to month, Phone Power does charge a relatively high cancellation fee for breaking contract.
Pros
  • Three international calling plan options
  • Great call clarity
  • Variety of desirable features
Cons
  • Higher cancellation fee than others
  • Not as easy to set up as some
  • Steep price jump from Plus plan to Premium plan
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Best Value for Small Businesses
Broadvoice is Phone Power’s more business-oriented counterpart. Both are owned by the same parent company, and both offer similar services. Broadvoice offers three levels of international plans to choose from – World, World Plus and World Premium – which allow you to make unlimited calls to 28, 75 and 87 countries respectively.
One thing we like about Broadvoice is that all levels of plans come with the same features, so you don’t have to upgrade or pay extra for access to things like conference calling or a softphone. These plans are available both with one- or two-year contracts and on a month-to-month basis. Contracts can save you a little money versus the month-to-month payments, but be advised that Broadvoice does have a pretty high cancellation fee. Broadvoice uses the same international calling network as Phone Power, so the two have comparable call quality. Calls are clear and reliable, and in our tests, we never had a dropped call. We also appreciated the online account management, which is a great feature for small businesses. The online platform is particularly user-friendly compared to other calling services. The quick and easy setup make Broadvoice an especially good option for small business owners who have little IT experience.
Pros
  • Inexpensive month-to-month plans
  • Unlimited calling to up to 87 countries
  • Bandwidth Saver tool for calling on slow internet connections
Cons
  • Higher cancellation fee than others
  • Slower customer service responses than others
  • Plan and pricing features aren’t outlined well online
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Best Customized Service
Most companies we reviewed have a selection of specific international calling plans, but 8x8 offers only customized plans. This does mean that you have to spend a bit more time choosing which parts of their service offerings to include in your own plan, but it pays off because you only end up paying for the features and services that you need.
The Unlimited extension gives you unlimited call time to a few countries, including Canada, Puerto Rico, Guam, the U.S. Virgin Islands and a handful of European countries. The Global Extension ups the covered country count to 40, which is fewer countries than either Phone Power or Broadvoice, but still a great option if those 40 countries cover the areas you need to call. The customized service does not stop with a custom plan. During our testing, we were also paired with an account representative who replied to our inquiries in less than one business day. We found the company’s live chat help efficient and knowledgeable and also appreciated the numerous user guides, manuals, FAQs and YouTube tutorials. There are a variety of ways to use 8x8, and all of them are easy to set up. A softphone is included in your plan, and 8x8 provides a mobile app for both iOS and Android, so you can make VoIP calls from your smartphone. Call quality was a little less clear in our tests with 8x8 than it was with Phone Power and Broadvoice, but it was still higher than average.
Pros
  • Customized plans
  • Best customer service
  • Easy setup
Cons
  • Creating customized plans takes longer than choosing ready-made ones
  • Non international calling to mobile phones
  • Fewer covered countries than others
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Best for Conference Calls
If you need an international call service for conference calls, the VOIP.com World Plan is the best choice.
This service lets you call 55 countries, and the basic calling plan includes about 1,200 minutes. You’re charged international calling rates if you go over the limit or call a country not on the list. We liked VOIP.com for conference calls because its calls sound clear and it’s easy to set up. You can download softphones to your desktop without incurring an extra fee – other services charge $10 for a softphone. This is another easy way to facilitate international conference calls without having to worry about equipment.
Pros
  • No charge for installing softphones
Cons
  • No unlimited call plans
$0.00VOIP.com
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Best Installation
If you want an international call service that’s easy to install, VOIPo 1200 is the best choice.
You plug the VOIPo adapter into your phone set or a phone set you purchase through the company. After you connect to the internet and wait 10 minutes, you’re good to go. It was one of the simpler installations we saw. VOIPo has good call quality, and we even had good luck when contacting isolated locations. The plan we looked at only includes 40 countries and has 1,200 minutes. One drawback of VOIPo is it doesn’t offer a mobile app or softphone options – you need to use a third-party for each of those features.
Pros
  • Quick installation and setup
Cons
  • No mobile app
$0.00VOIPo
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Why Trust Us?
Old fashioned international calling services that charge you per call are costly. With VoIP technology, you can get more international talk time for less money, which makes these types of services great if you spend a lot of time on the phone with people in different countries – whether your needs are personal or more business oriented.

In addition to the 30 hours we spent researching, making international calls, asking customer service representatives setup questions and evaluating the pros and cons of various features and service specifications, our team has years of experience with VoIPs, making international phone calls and posting our opinions on the internet. We want to help you and your business thrive and grow without unnecessarily expensive international calls, and our expertise can help you find the best international call service.

How We Evaluated
Our search for the best international call service started with some research. We scoped out the available options, comparing and contrasting their specifications and features. We then reached out to each service mentioned here and obtained a trial or basic international calling plan from each one. We set them up, talked to their customer service representatives and conducted hands-on tests, using the service in much the same way you would. This means, of course, that we made a bunch of international calls to various countries. We judged each of these calls for its quality, noting any dropped calls, sound distortions, feedback or other quirks. Phone Power and Broadvoice scored the best specifically for call quality, with 8x8 also performing well.

We tried to make our testing simulate usual consumer use as closely as possible. When we ran into any technical issues, we looked to the service’s online resources for help. When we had more difficult issues, we contacted customer support and graded them on the timeliness and helpfulness of their replies. We then took the information we gathered from testing and added in our previous research. These together formed the basis for our lineup of services and our top picks. 

How Much Does an International Call Service Cost?

The amount you pay for your international call service depends a lot on your contract length – you pay less when you sign up for a longer term. With a two-year contract, you can expect to pay around $15 a month, and a one-year contract often costs around $17 a month. Most of the services we looked at offer month-to-month options, which cost closer to $20 a month. The benefit of going month to month is it’s easy to end service. To end a long-term contract, you have to pay a cancellation fee, which can be anywhere from $50 to $100.

The Best Way to Make International Calls
Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) services transmit real-time audio calls over the internet, eliminating the need for more expensive, traditional landlines or mobile telephone contracts for you or your business. VoIP is flexible and inexpensive, and many VoIP services offer international calling plans with extremely affordable rates. If you make international calls frequently, a pay-per-call system can be costly. These international call services offer unlimited international calls to certain countries for a flat monthly fee, making VoIP international call services an excellent option for individuals and small businesses alike.

What to Look For
Call clarity is extremely important for any call plan. Our best picks all have great call quality so you don’t miss out on important information. The next most important thing to consider is budget. Many of these services offer basic plans on a month-to-month basis that allow you to add additional services as your needs expand and change.

As with any phone plan, consider the features you or your business will need and use before you make a decision. Also make sure that the countries you need to call most often are part of your plan. For a business, features like extra lines and conference calling might be beneficial, though you might not care about these if you’re just calling friends or relatives. One feature we found particularly useful is a companion mobile app that allows you to make and receive VoIP calls on the go.

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